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Engines of DiplomacyIndian Trading Factories and the Negotiation of American Empire$
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David Andrew Nichols

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781469626895

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469626895.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

A Trade upon Public Ground

A Trade upon Public Ground

(p.12) 1 A Trade upon Public Ground
Engines of Diplomacy

David Andrew Nichols

University of North Carolina Press

Trade between Indians and Europeans began in the sixteenth century. For both groups it served as a source of valuable (if occasionally dangerous) goods and as a guarantor of trust and good interethnic relations. Colonial governments supported this commerce through subsidies and by building publically-operated truck (or trading) houses. Imperial officials who did not recognize the importance of Euro-Indian trade and gift-giving invariably alienated their Native American neighbors, often to the point of violence. The newest American empire, the United States, acknowledged the connection between commerce and Indian alliance, but lacked the resources to act on this insight until the ratification of the 1787 Constitution. A long war with a Native American confederation and fears of British and Spanish influence persuaded white American officials of the importance of Indian allies and trading partners, and President George Washington persuaded Congress to win such allies by building a network of federally-funded trading factories.

Keywords:   Alliance, Confederacy, Regulation, Truck-Houses, Washington

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